Last week, Microsoft Skype For Business announced the upcoming End-of-Life program for its integration with third-party audio conferencing providers. Effective immediately, customers who do not currently integrate their 3rd-party audio conferencing service with Skype for Business will no longer have the option to do so. Skype for Business customers currently using an integrated 3rd-party audio conferencing service have until April 1, 2019 to decide what they'd like to do next. With this announcement customers are tasked with deciding between the following options:
The first and most obvious suggestion provided by Microsoft is for customers to migrate to Microsoft Audio Conferencing. While this option might seem simple enough, it could be assumed that Skype for Business customers would have already been using the Microsoft Audio Conferencing integration if it was their preferred audio conferencing platform. Many customers who have continued to use 3rd-party providers have likely done so because Microsoft Audio Conferencing does not fit their feature/functionality requirements OR, at the very least, does not do so in the most cost-effective manner.
The second and least convenient option offered is for customers to continue using their 3rd-party audio conferencing service separately from their Skype for Business application. While this is doable, it is certainly a step back for customers who have long been using their audio conferencing service in unison with Skype for Business, allowing for easy access to contacts and groups for regularly scheduled, or even last minute conferences and collaboration efforts.
Option 3 (recommended by Sonexis)
The third and final option (not mentioned by Microsoft) allows customers the best of both worlds. Sonexis offers a Skype for Business plug-in that allows our audio conferencing solution, ConferenceManager™2, to interact with Skype for Business as 3rd-party providers previously have through Skype's integration option. With this feature, customers using Sonexis as their audio conferencing provider can still easily launch a call from your Skype for Business contact list, initiating a blast dial out to those selected.
- Feature-Rich - In addition to our ability to continue to integrate with Skype for Business, Sonexis ConferenceManager2 is feature-rich and customizable based on your needs. The Audio Console is the best tool for Call Management that allows hosts to mute, hold, dial out, see Active Talkers, facilitate breakout sessions and more.
- Cost-Effective - Many Sonexis customers see a ROI within the first 10-months of using ConferenceManager2.
- Investment Protection - Sonexis DOES NOT End-of-Life products, protecting your investment and allowing for a long life-cycle for the solution you choose.